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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Sep 09, 2021 (Newsletter Issue 14/21)
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New Trade Secret Law in Force

On June 5, 2021, the new trade secret protection law entered into force in Serbia. The new law harmonises Serbian legislation with Directive (EU) 2016/943 on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use and disclosure.

For the information to be considered as a trade secret under the new law, it must:
- Have commercial value because it is not generally known or easily available to third parties who normally encounter this type of information.
- Be protected by its holder by appropriate measures to preserve its secrecy.

For a trade secret to enjoy legal protection under the new law, trade secret owners must institute internal trade secret protection policies and take other prescribed protective measures, such as using the term "trade secret" on confidential documents, restricting access to the premises or files where confidential information is located, and entering into confidentiality agreements with persons who may have access to trade secrets.

Under the new law, foreign holders of trade secrets have the same rights as domestic holders only if such protection arises from international agreements in force in Serbia or from the principle of reciprocity. The previous law did not distinguish between foreign and domestic holders.

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